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During this period, he became increasingly unresponsive. When we were able to finally get a response, he was always very courteous and portrayed himself as beleaguered. After much frustration in attempting to communicate with him and several "check-in" deadlines which he ignored (I had asked for status reports on a regular basis so that we could get a sense of the timing. This was particularly important as the work required that we spend several nights elsewhere, and we were trying to manage that process), we decided that we had had enough and told him that since he hadn't honored the contract (which called for a specific start date, long since past) we wanted our deposit back.
He eventually promised to drop a check for the remaining amount off at our house by June 1. He did make a dropoff, but it was two checks - one dated June 9 and the other dated June 16. We deposited the first check on June 9, but today (June 12) my wife received a call from him in which he said that that check had bounced. Obviously, we have no reason to believe that the 2nd one will be negotiable. I am today filing a claim in Small Claims court to chase him for the money. I am also going to look into criminal charges...to the best of my knowledge passing bad checks is still a crime in Massachusetts.
I would NEVER recommend this guy...he comes across as well-meaning in conversation, and talks a good game with regard to materials, etc. But none of his assurances come to path. He's irresponsible at best, but he also seems to be somewhat sociopathic...he has demonstrated absolutely no ability to keep his word, and has consistently ducked the situation and left us feeling anxious and disregarded."
We were sorely in need of storage in our unit, so I asked them if they thought he had the skill to handle larger projects and remodeling. They said they had seen some work he did across the street and that it was "amazing" "really beautiful" "very high quality." Plus, I could see their built-ins and kitchen through their window and it did look great.
When I met
-His workers are, for the most part, unskilled, and unsupervised.
-They don't clean up their messes.
-They don't use drop cloths or make any effort to protect your belongings. They damaged our bed, left paint splatter on our belongings, left a smudge of wood putty on a vintage dress my daughter has not yet had a
-They are great at starting, but lousy at seeing a project through to completion in a timely manner. We would be told work would begin on Monday, the guy would show up, stay for an hour and then get called away to another job, not to return for days or weeks.
-They use plywood instead of solid wood, though in your contract it states simply that he uses "wood."
-They use cheap materials, regardless of how much you pay them.
-They are not skilled painters. They do not smooth, repair, or clear walls of nails or tape or other foreign objects before painting them. They don't use painter's tape, so the lines between ceiling and wall are squiggly. I can still see shadows of the old paint on our ceiling. I requested another coat. They agreed, but never followed up.
-They did a sloppy job closing up our walls after doing electrical work and the scars and imperfections are still visible.
-Every concession they make for you, even when it comes to fixing their screw-ups, will be dredged up and rubbed in your face at every opportunity.
-I have spoken to some of his other clients and trust me, it isn't just you.
And that is just the tip of the iceberg. It was all far, far worse than it sounds.
In short, we paid $9,000 for two plywood built-ins, some minor electrical work, the painting of two small rooms. The work was consistently sloppy, unprofessional and riddled with delays. Our belongings and our premises were damaged in the process. The project remains unfinished.
DO USE ANGIE'S LIST TO FIND A COMPETENT CONTRACTOR.
DO CHECK REFERENCES AND don't TAKE ANYTHING AT FACE VALUE.
DO YOUR RESEARCH.
don't HIRE ONE COMPANY TO DO ALL YOUR WORK. COMMISSION SMALLER JOBS TO GIVE THE COMPANY A
DO NOT PAY FOR THE WHOLE JOB IN ADVANCE. PAY SMALL INCREMENTS IN ADVANCE.
BE CLEAR ABOUT QUALITY OF THE RAW MATERIALS AND HARDWARE YOU EXPECT AND FOLLOW UP.
ASSUME THAT ALL CONTRACTORS ARE BEARS WITH THUMBS AND POWER TOOLS. UNTIL THEY EARN YOUR TRUST DO NOT LEAVE THEM TO THEIR OWN DEVICES.
NEVER HIRE A MAN TO DO A MAN'S JOB. CONSIDER HIRING A WOMAN OR AT LEAST A MAN WITH A BACKGROUND IN INTERIOR DESIGN.
HIRE A CABINETMAKER INSTEAD OF A GENERAL CONTRACTOR.
WHEN SOMEONE TELLS YOU EVERYTHING IS MADE OF PLYWOOD, don't BELIEVE IT. A QUALITY CONTRACTOR AND/OR CABINETMAKER WILL USE QUALITY MATERIALS."
Once the demolition began, they found a few problems within the structure of the house that needed to be addressed. They displayed knowledge and competency in handling these challenges at a fair cost to us and in a timely manner.
We highly recommend D&E, have passed their information on to friends, and have recently signed a new contract with them to have our garage rebuilt! We are very happy with our home improvements and everyone who comes to our house comments on the quality of the work. "
In summary, if we ever need quality cabinets - for anything - built again,
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